Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Going in a New Direction

I was looking back at my old blog posts the other day, which made me realise just how much I have changed since August of last year. I think it’s partly to do with blogging (through sorting out my thoughts, getting advice from wonderful people, and seeing so many brave bloggers follow their dreams), and partly to do with my complete dissatisfaction with my current degree; that I have decided to finally work towards something I really want, rather than settling for less.

If you have followed me for a while, you’ll know that I have a tendency to play it safe. Because of this, I have always steered towards career-based degrees, rather than subjects I actually enjoy. Which hasn't been the best decision, since despite my desire to be practical and do practical subjects, I am the least practical person in the entire world. Give me an essay to write and I am in my element. Get me to do anything hands-on that doesn’t involve a lot of words and self-reflection...and I will probably cry. I have nightmares about having to write lesson plan after lesson plan. Which is exactly what teaching entails. Maybe not the best career choice for me?

So while I loved the kids and they loved me...my lessons sucked. They were just the worst. I have no concept of what would work in a real classroom setting. My ideas were just ridiculous. I live in a land filled with words and theories like ‘post-modernism’ and other such terms that everyone uses to sound smart but no one really understands; not a land of ‘hands-on’ activities and ‘real-life’.

And I think, most importantly, it was the feeling I got every morning before I entered the school. That sinking feeling. While I enjoyed my days there when I actually entered the building, I really found it difficult to make myself walk inside. To make myself take those steps. I don’t want a job that I dread going to. I work every day now, and while it’s not an amazing job, I don’t have any problem going to it. I don’t need to feel excitement about work; I’m not all that fussy. But I don’t want a job that I feel unhappy about going to.

And so I felt that is was time to change tactics. Instead of picking a career-based degree and trying to force myself to like it; I am going to do a degree that I am really interested in. If a job comes out if it, then great! And if it doesn’t, at least I know that I tried.

So starting next month, I am doing my Masters in Writing and Literature. It’s not practical, but it is something that I will really enjoy.

And I have started to realise that life is short, and doing what you love is the important thing. Even if there isn’t a guaranteed career waiting at the end of it.

46 comments:

SJ said...

yay for you!
i always thought i wanted to be a teacher until i worked at a summer camp in the states and realised that it was really tough coming up with ways to fill the day for kids that was both productive and fun. It was actually really stressful at times!

So if the thought of turning up to school every day filled you with dread, then i think you've definitely moved in the right direction. You can always figure out the job business when you finish and that't at least a year away!

ellie's desk said...

Its always best to do something you love. I hope you enjoy the program and it opens new doors for you.

lucy and sarah said...

I'm excited for you! Wish you all the best in this field.

Anna Katrina said...

good for you !!


stop by sometime<3
http://passportglamour.blogspot.com

aki! said...

Live is too short not to enjoy it.

seven-percentsolution.blogspot.com

Anything but Bland said...

thank you so much for your comment! you are very sweet. :):)

<3 love polly

Sara Louise said...

I think it's fantastic that you've made this decision and are going for it rather than just going along with everything. Best of luck! xo

Brandi {not your average ordinary} said...

Good for you, Kaylia! I've always been a big believer that if you follow your heart and do what you're passionate about, things have a way of working out. I have three degrees now and what I really want to do isn't closely connected with any of them. And that's okay, because I love it. I can't wait to see where the world takes you.

Lindsay @ Delighted Momma said...

I could not agree more.. DO what you love and the jobs WILL come if you are passionate enough about it! Good luck :)

XO Lindsay

Ann said...

I used to be teacher but am now taking a break, oh I know I need too, because it sometimes gets too much of a routine for me.

Goodluck and best wishes,
good for you for going after what you love.

Sarah said...

You will be amazing. And you know what? A career WILL come out of it. It may not be the career you expect, but the time you spend, the people you meet, the connections you make, the things you learn to love even more deeply through your education will prepare you in EVERY way for a career that will make you happy because you actively CHOSE it, instead of just letting it happen to you. Best wishes for school! I just finished my first semester back, and I can honestly say I loved my classes so much that I'm sad they're over.

There's something freeing and light about allowing yourself to be happy, regardless of what is the practical, safe choice.

becky said...

This is both brave and wonderful in equal measure. I am so, so happy that you've chosen to do this.

I completely understand what you're saying about having a set career path--it offers security but more often than not, you've just been shoe-horned and forced into it. If you ever need a little more inspiration, I recommend reading Ken Robinson's 'The Element'--it's non-fiction: just a collection of people following their dreams rather than an arbitrary career. At the same time, it's a crucial commentary on education. Really, really interesting--and I imagine, for you, would really ground your beliefs (because it did for me--a girl with similar beliefs!)

I really am so thrilled about this new move of yours! :) xx

Toni said...

That is so great for you! You're a great writer and I love that you're doing something that you love!!!! Good luck!

Sabrina said...

I know how you feel when it comes to your study. I studied to be an English teacher for one year and I really detested writing lesson plans (though it didn't give me nightmares). So boring!

Anyway, good luck with your new choice of study, and I'm sure there are plenty of career opportunities for people who've studied literature (though the first thing I can come up with is teaching, lol, the irony!).

Eleanor said...

yey! and it is practical- if you want to become a writer :)... good luck. i studied drama and english and university and loved it!
it wasnt practical necessarily although i am going to do a masters on theatre in the community and am hoping that will be my career.
good luck kaylia xo

amy b.s. said...

good for you! i would love to get my masters in something like that even though it has nothing remotely to do with what i do career wise. but it would be so interesting! good luck!

R. Grace said...

Congrats! Don't let anyone get in the way of you pursuing your dreams. People may give you some flak about it (like an old highschool teacher I ran into: "You're moving to New York for THEATRE? People actually do that?!") but I'm starting to realize that maybe they're jealous that you're taking a risk.
Happy adventuring!

Ashley said...

Oh yes...this is a sore subject for me right now. But I have a hard time deciphering is what I'm going through at my job is growing pains...or if it's not the right job for me.

So I have resolved to give it time. But ultimately I agree whole-heartedly. I must do what I love!!

Alex said...

Good for you! I'm facing a similar dilemma. I majored in business in college and hated EVERY SECOND OF IT. History is what I love, but what in the world would I do with a history degree? Now I'm in a job/industry I hate. Maybe one day I'll suck it up and go for what I love like you did.

Bonnie said...

Ohhhhh, I totally agree with you in every possible way. If you like something, then go for it. Don't let issues of practicality stand in the way of what you really want. You can figure out what to do with it when you get there.

I am going through the exact same thing right now. I don't love my English program like I thought I would. I still like English, but I don't know if I want to go through another year of this. I just don't feel the love anymore, and there are too many problems in the English department to make it worth the trouble. I don't know if I should stick it out for another year since I am halfway finished or if I should start a new graduate program that I think I will be more interested in ...

Growing up is difficult.

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Twitter: @GlamKitten88

vintch said...

speaking from someone who majored in english literature, i'll tell you this: it's fabulous. you are going to love your studies. but you know what's awesome? you'll love it because it's what you LOVE. heck, you could love studying quantum physics is that's your passion. kudos to you, my sweet friend.

Hazel said...

I did a childcare course and had to do a placement in various settings and I felt just like you. I enjoyed working with the children when I got in there but I struggled walking through the door!

I'm not a very practical person either and I find it really disheartening that although I'm quite good academically, those in my class who were better practically have got childcare jobs and I don't.

kimbirdy said...

yay!! that really is good for you. i have often felt similarly. if i could do it all over again, i would pursue that which thrilled my soul, art!, despite the fact that my surroundings told me art was ridiculous and impractical and not a real choice. now i'm almost 30 and i feel like i have to start all over at the beginning, adding on to my already astronomical student debt, in order to finally be what i really want to be when i grow up. it's a hard struggle at this point, so i'm so excited you're fighting for yourself and doing what you really want to do.

Deidre said...

I picked two degrees without a career at the end...Who has a major in physics and a minor in film?

I am so excited for you!

keishua said...

Good for you. I know plenty of people with practical degrees struggle to find a job, too. I forget that...I got an English degree and it was one of the best things ever. I think I wanted to be in marketing or something previously and but that was more of authentic path for me. Good Luck.

Missy said...

Whooo way to go!

The Book Florist said...

That is fantastic! Well done and I really hope that you can wholeheartedly enjoy it, and get armfulls of fun and delight doing something that makes sense to you.

I plan to do drama and English literature, and then education, which I recall was sort of similar to what you did, but I can't think about it with anything like enthusiam. I've been in school all my life, and the idea of getting out, studying and getting straight back in, on the less fun, harder side of the school scale, makes me quite unsettled. I really don't know what to do. I would love to run a book store, but I know that there will be only hardship and loss down that path, as I won't make enough money to get anything from it in the long run. And writing doesn't make anyone money unless they are either incredible and saleable or terrible and saleable. I don't believe myself to be either. I'm delighted you have found a new twist to explore, but it makes me extra nervous about mine. I suppose whatever.

Anyway, have fun preparing for the commencement of your new subject and I hope that it will be even more fantastic than you imagined! Take care.

Katie said...

Yeah! Humanities majors unite! I double majored in English lit and religious studies and I don't regret it in the least. It lead to my year in Bulgaria!

M said...

A masters degree is always practical! regardless of what is is in - it shows that you take initiative to reach for your dreams and future employers will love that! Good luck and CONGRATS!

Anna said...

That's such great news! I think you've done the exact right thing. I did a Masters in Writing here in the UK straight after my art degree and I loved it. I worked on some magazines in London afterwards and then went freelance for a few years. It can be a career choice and you clearly have the talent to make it one. I wouldn't say that if I didn't mean it! Your writing is really engaging and fun to read. Plus you seem to be a clever girl so go for it. Do the thing you loved doing most as a child, I think that's how the saying goes, and even tho I haven't been reading your blog for long I can tell that you really love books and words. Also, thanks for the kind comment you left when I went in for surgery last week. I'm out now :)
AnnaXXX

{ T G L } said...

Good for you! Trust me, you won't regret it. The enrichment you'll get out of a degree that truly satisfies you is priceless. I've done it. Got myself a 'useless degree' which completely impacted the way I see the world. And now I am getting another 'useless degree'! Hah! Sure, I fret about the future but I am HAPPY what I am doing. And in the long run, I know I'll have a lower chance at burning out.

Good luck in all your endeavours!

Greetings from a fellow blogger :)
This Good Life

Bri said...

congrats to you! that's a very brave and inspiring decision you have made and i wish you the best of luck in pursuing your dreams. you're 100% correct when you said it's better that you tried than settled for less. you'll definitely feel more whole when you do what you love. :)

Bee Sarah Lee Bailey said...

lovely this is exciting!

Krystal said...

amen to that last paragraph - and good for you! this is the best attitude.

Katie Anderson said...

A masters in writing and literature sounds perfect! I'm starting a creative writing masters in September which sounds like it will be similar. It'll be fun to read about how you're getting on and compare the two!

lilabraga said...

Its always best to do something you love don't you think?.... I hope you enjoy the program and it opens new doors in this life for you.
hugs
lila

Chelsea Lane said...

COOOOOOOL! I have always wanted to get a writing degree.. I guess we'll see where I end up ;)

xoxo

Eleanor said...

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Zoe said...

Congratulations! I would love to do a masters one day. I hope everything goes well. It takes so much courage to follow your dreams and it can be easy to get stuck in a rut and play things safe. xx

Torie said...

Girl, you do what you have to do! I'm glad I stumbled onto your blog when this was the first post here, because it was definitely an inspiration! The only way to be happy in this world is to follow your heart, anyway. Regardless of whether or not you become successful by means of what society entails, you'll be satisfied, and that's what matters. I get so proud when I read posts like this, cuz it's such a big step to take, but congrats and I wish you well!

Victoria said...

Inspiring post !! youre such a good writer and I'm so inspired by you ! Keep it up dear !!! :)

Chelsea Elizabeth. said...

Good for you! You're right, life is too short! I'm getting ready to go to college this year but I've been half tempted to not go until next year so I have some sort of an idea of what I WANT to do. I haven't thought about it as much as I should've and I'm afraid I'll be wasting my time while I oculd be saving money so I won't be in so much debt from school!

<3Chelsea Elizabeth
http://www.organizedxxmess.blogspot.com

Rebecca said...

Good for you! I wish you well in whatever you choose to do but you're right life is too short and you have to do what makes you happy!

I've just came across your blog today and I love your 'about me' section. It is so inspiring :)

www.rebeccaarmstrongx.blogspot.com

Indie.Tea said...

Congratulations on getting your Masters and pursuing a field/career you enjoy! Its very brave and beautiful of you...and I hope you will be very happy.

Jo said...

Congratulations!! This is so exciting! I'm truly happy for you! Going with your passion is the best thing for your soul! Bravo, lady!

Popcorn, Pugs & Peonies said...

"They" say you should choose something you love and then find a way to get paid for it. I hope you do:) Congratulations on your big change!

*Erin